21 September, 2020

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Sagala Presents Detailed Report To WC On Corruption Investigations: UNP Responds Strongly To Sirisena’s Accusations

Law and Order Minister Sagala Ratnayaka made a detailed presentation to the UNP Working Committee this morning on the current status of the bribery and corruption investigations.

Ratnayaka, in his presentation said, the Police Financial Crimes Investigations Division had forwarded 92 files to the Attorney General’s Department upon completion of investigations. He added that indictments have only been filed with regard to 13 cases.

Sagala Ratnayaka – Minister of Law & Order

The Law and Order Minister said the CID had investigated 38 cases out of which 14 deal with individuals and 24 relate to property matters. Out of the 14 which deals with high profile individuals only 6 had been indicted.

“I am not blaming the Attorney General’s Department. I know they are handicapped due to shortage of officials. Only a handful of officials are geared to deliver results. We have to understand every aspect of this problem. It’s not fair to blame the UNP for these practical problems.”

“These cases are not held up by the UNP. Our party had no such intention. But there can be other elements trying to block investigations. For example, Sajin Vaas Gunawardena’s case was investigated and sent to the AG’s Department. We didn’t even know what happened after that,” Ratnayaka said, giving a strong response to the President’s accusation that the UNP was blocking investigations.

“Investigations into the cases of Thajudeen, Eknaligoda and Lasantha Wickrematunge reached final stages. But the final pieces of evidence are hidden in some state bodoies,” Ratnayaka said, indicating that the military was behind the covering up perpetrators.

In fact, President Maithripala Sirisena, who is also the Minister of Defence, went on record saying that no hero would be prosecuted for crimes during his tenure.

Deputy Minister Ajith P Perera, at that point, hit out strongly against the military’s conduct when it came to crimes involving members of the Army.

Perera said those covering up evidence and those supporting the culprits should be exposed to the public. Perera’s statement too was directed at the President due to the latter’s remarks on protecting war heroes at any cost.

The UNP Working Committee then proposed to hold a press conference to clear the air on the matter and explain the party’s position.

Justice Minister Thalatha Athukorale at this point intervened and said holding a press conference might set the party on a collision course with the Attorney General’s Department.

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe responded to the Justice Minister with a snide remark saying, “If we don’t make the public aware of this, all of us will have to go home.”

As a result of Ratnayaka’s presentation, the UNP Working Committee decided to pass a resolution endorsing the budget proposal to set up a High Court that would deal with bribery and corruption investigations.

It also called for the appointment of a Prosecutor General to expedite cases of corruption.

A committee comprising Sagala Ratnayaka and Thalatha Athukorale was appointed to brief the party Working Committee on a monthly basis on the progress of investigations while a five-member committee comprising Ajith P Perera, Sujeewa Senasinghe, Nissanka Nanayakkara and Asendra Siriwardena was appointed to assist them.

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Latest comments

  • 15
    1

    This is not about the above news item. I want to ask why you have blocked the right-click button. I cannot open links as new tabs to see the related news items in a given news item. Pls unblocked it. You may try to block copy and paste but blocking the right-click button is not the solution.

    • 7
      0

      I agree. Further, no entry can be made in the comment box, if it is opened by Firefox. Chrome and Edge are OK. I have found out that even in websites of Banks, all sorts of changes are done in the name of improvements but end of the day there are more difficulties to the user.

    • 5
      1

      I complained on the 10th or so, and Col. Telegraph has responded.

      Please see the last few comments on Prof. Chandre Dharmawardene’s article on Nov. 12th for more details. I can’t paste the link with right click.

      To open a link, one left clicks, doesn’t one?

      I’ve spent half an hour checking recent comments. No links appear to have been pasted since about the 10th. I had earlier thought that only some computers and browsers were affected.

      Please look at the comments on that article: I have given you the response from Colombo Telegraph.

  • 6
    0

    Presenting statistics at this stage is neither here nor there. The public, by and large have lost confidence and it is difficult to regain. A keen observer brought this to my kind notice. He says take the Thajudeen case. All what we can prove now is that there was a cover up. The incident was attributed as an accident where both the police and the then medical big wigs were involved. Other than that who did what and why is not made known to the public. I know for certain that those in Government are not discrete but would seek publicity to the maximum if at least the motive for the crime is known. The publicity of a love triangle proved ultimately to be a non-starter. But now the Minister presents to the working committee that the investigations are in the “final stages”. No body with a proper sense would accept that. A press conference! What on earth are you going to tell the members of the fourth estate?

    • 11
      1

      What a bunch of incompetent monkeys! The defense is “we investigated and sent the files to AG’s department. We don’t know what happened since?”. Wholly unacceptable. Even worse, LAUGHABLE! Can you believe stupid Sri Lankans have entrusted the future of their country to these jokers, since 1948. Corrupt UNP & WC idiots would not last 24 hours in a business enterprise with accountability & transparency. Yet, we let them run our nation time and again. Still wondering how we got here? Cheers!

  • 11
    0

    Dear President Maithripala Sirisena,

    This is serious. Those comments of yours about not prosecuting those who are in the “Armed Forces” are going to cause serious problems even within the country. They’ll be used by every corrupt fellow to explain away almost any ineffectiveness.

    *

    How can we arbitrarily declare that every member of the “tri-forces” to be a war hero? First, we’ve got to investigate. There’s nothing more that anybody can say on that subject!

    • 4
      10

      Sinhala man:

      Other countries that told that forces personnel would be touched are Turkey and Britain. Sri lanka did not have a conventional war. IT was a war with terrorists. Britain which invaded another country said they would not prosecute forces. SO, DO NOT TALK NONSENSE..

    • 5
      0

      “How can we arbitrarily declare that every member of the “tri-forces” to be a war hero”

      It is simply because Mahinda Rajapaksha, Gotabaya Rajapaksha, Wimal Weerawansa, Udaya Gammanpila, Dinesh Gunawardana, Kamal Gunaratna says so.

    • 5
      0

      Well said, Sinhala man.

      I, too, fail to see how a criminal can be excused of any serious crime, just for serving in the army during the conflict years. War hero or not, a crime is a crime, & nobody is above the law.

      The stupid statement from a President of a country is indeed laughable & clearly demonstrate his lack of intelligence & competence. What a cheap display to gain popularity of the masses & their votes.

  • 12
    0

    lasantha,ekneligoda and thajudeen are the most important ones and long overdue,especially lasantha’s killing.Are they hoping that with every year that passes by everyone except the family members will forget about the matter.If the army is blocking these over to you milo man,our commander in chief,unless you want to end up like mugabe one day by giving too much powers to the army and putting them above all the civilians rights.Treat the army well but keep them in their place.

    army intelligence can’t go around killing prominent civilians and navy can’t go around abducting youths and demanding ransom and after getting the money killing them too.Then we can say goodbye to peoples power one day and become a tinpot dictatorship with democracy in name only.

    as for the attorney general not indicting after being given the files then he should be asked to give a full report to parliament within a week and the minister of justice should read it out in parliament.

    • 1
      0

      I fully endorse to deal with the OBVIOUS crimes still awaiting answers, but coincidentally refer to ‘the family’?!

  • 6
    7

    Shankar, it is a forlorn hope to see justice done in the Lasantha case. It is on record in Hansard that Ranil Wickremesinghe alleged that Sarath Fonseka got the killing done,presumably because Lasantha was critical about some Military purchases.
    Lasantha was no angel however. He used the Leader to criticise activities of both the govt and the private sector, and when the intended victims allegedly got round Lasantha supposedly by paying him money or providing women he would suddenly stop the criticism.

    • 4
      0

      percy

      now we know after the bond scam how clean is Mr.clean is so don’t put too much weight to what came out of his pearly lips.At that time what he said was reliable but not now after what we know of him. Mahinda would have deliberately got someone to tell that to Ranil and ranil because he bum sucks mahinda would have said it.I believe the culprit is gota due to the MIG deal.lasantha was going to spill the beans on it.If fonseka did it rajapakshes would have screwed him up and he would have been in jail for life.In fact they tried to get a intelligence guy to frame him with promise of a grand posting abroad but that guy refused to tell lies.

      I think just like ekneligoda and thajudeen who had nothing to do with fonseka,lasantha’s murder is being covered up by the army because their guys did the deeds on the rajapakshe orders.Army would not be bothred to cover up if their guys were not involved in it.Their men too will go down with the rajapakshes,that is what they must be worried about.

  • 8
    1

    Earlier they told that it was the wijedasa Rajapakse that delayed Mahinda Rajapakse’s cases and instead, make Ranil wickramsinghe abscond the FCID. LAter it was revealed that thalatha Athukorala has instructed deputy AG not to prosecute Sajin Vass gunawardane. (They are keeping him assurance against Mahinda Rajapakse. AG is definitely the political stooge.
    MY3 should become A MAHINDA RAJAPAKSE and not just talking and doing nothing. Declare emergency. Cancel the 19th amendment and get rid of all the thieves and under emergency appoint good people until we go the elections.
    Out of all 225, only the JVP has declared their assets. that means every one else is a robber, or a thief.
    I heard Basil like people saying I never stole anything except I used another VIKALPAYAK.

  • 0
    0

    This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our Comment policy.For more detail see our Comment policy https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/comments-policy-2/

  • 10
    0

    There is no question during the period of MR’s rule (a bleak period in the Nation’s history) there was unbridled bribery, corruption and crime and they were rampant and unrestrained and little or no action was taken to punish those responsible. They continue under this Government albeit not to that extent. It is imperative to do what is needed to have speedy ‘fair’ trials and punish those who who are / were responsible for these crimes (including the so called Bond scam). No one should object to such moves as long as those been indicted / prosecuted are given ‘fair’ trials (unlike the one meted out to FM SF during MR’s reign). So I think this is a step in the right direction and should have been taken long time ago. This Government has 3 years more to fulfil its promises to the People (one of which was to punish wrong doers and criminals). Justice should be meted out fairly to all and no one should be above the law of the Land. It appears there are ‘forces’ within this Government that are obstructing / impeding /thwarting punishment of (selected) criminals / wrong doers.

    • 1
      0

      Gamini,
      Agree with the brunt of your comment. However, proof of the pudding is in the eating. I am compelled to think those so called “steps taken for speedy, but fair trials” is another classic UNP elite eyewash for the stupid masses. So little, so late. RW never changes his colours. The whole thing will be delayed and watered-down. There will be a few symbolic trials to bamboozle the country. People’s uprising is required. Just like the one that threw out the criminals from Hambantota. Yahapalanya clowns as expected have forgotten, how they got to those positions of power.
      Cheers!

  • 4
    2

    Our issue is not sending people to jail. Our issue is the double standard, double standard of the government, double standard of the judiciary, double standard of the FCID. One law to the government crooks and another law to others.
    .
    Unless arrests were made on the ground of terrorism, it is not fair to keep suspects on remand prison indefinitely, until the investigations are completed. How could you accuse someone
    before completing investigations? FCID was able to make their one-sided rationale as the law of the country in cases involving Security Forces personnel who are kept in remand custody claiming that investigations are yet to complete. The Judiciary should make these blunders correct. That is what people expect from the Judiciary. They need not to dance to the tune of the FCID.
    .
    It is no secret that class and wealth influence decisions of our Judiciary. How could a hired lawyer who works for money be the decisive factor in a case shoving justice, fairness and equality to the backburner. If so, why do we want judges? The Bond Commission is the best example.

  • 3
    7

    I am deeply offended by the verdict on Lord Buddha’s tattoo case in two ways. One is the cultural appropriation which is offensive. Hindus find tattoos with the symbol “OM” extremely offensive. Tourists are to abide and respect the religion of the country they visit. This verdict gives a wrong message. Anybody who wears a shirt, sarong, scarf, hat, towel and underwear with Lord Buddha’s image only have to say they wear them to show devotion to Buddhism. Are we going to accept that? The second issue is asking the Policemen to pay Rs. 50,000 each who acted in line with country’s cultural aspects and the State/Police to pay 700,000 for “misleading” the Magistrate with “misinterpreted facts.” What the SC is trying to imply here? |The Magistrates have no knowledge of the country’s law or they are so vulnerable that any Policeman can mislead them?
    To be honest, I don’t understand SC’s verdict. Does the Supreme Court accept wearing Lord Buddha’s tattoo is not offensive, therefore they think that Coleman should be compensated OR as the Police screwed up the case misleading the Magistrate who – as SC wanted me to believe – didn’t know what his jurisdiction is, therefore Coleman should be compensated? If this case is handled by the Controller/I&E, her deportation is in accordance with the law, right? I want to know because I don’t want to see tourists roaming our beaches wearing underwears with Lord Buddha’s image to show their devotion to Buddhism, as Coleman says.

    • 5
      0

      I think, they should have advised her not deporting her. Who ever the judge was stupid. Even when Buddha was living, if some praise or degrade Buddha advice was neglect it. WE behaved like muslims. IT was reasonable to ask her be respectful as buddhists when she was in Sri lanka for example by asking her to cover up that arm.

      • 0
        0

        That Ms. Coleman was treated with cruelty by the police and immigration authorities was sufficiently atoned by the justice meted out by the Lankan judicial system, serves as a sign of hope, that at least a sliver of Buddhism as taught by the Compassinate One still survives in the island.
        It is comforting to note, that the people who inhabit it, will one day have the peace and progress they long for.

        • 0
          0

          While I absolutely agree, dear Uthujngan, may I ask why public money (“our money”) should be used for this purpose.

          *

          It is Rajapaksa rhetoric that led to this. See the archived “Colombo Telegraph” articles of April 2014 .

    • 0
      0

      The courts and the officials should be guided only by the law and the administrative procedures – which must be published. Then the visitors can know their show of devotion can cuase issues. Offending sensibilities of individuals is never a practical criteria for charge sheeting anybody let alone a visitor from a distant country.

  • 4
    1

    We need military action similar to that in Zimbabwe. Army in power because political leaders have now become criminals instead of the ones they govern. So, let the Army take over, deal with the political criminals, and remain in power until they clean up the country off the shit called politicians. Public will be delighted, I am sure!

    • 1
      0

      The army has crooks too. It is a political army now.

    • 0
      0

      What makes you to believe that the undisciplined military will not prioritise it’s own agenda to safeguard it’s own perks and privileges and will not ally with a government that thwarts and subverts the fundamentals of democracy and freedom of the public who elected it in good faith which has turned to be anti people?

  • 4
    0

    This is a drama. UNP has been in power for 2 years with SLFP and the Minister in charge of Law and Order and Justice have always been UNPers. Further the Govt had 2 years to provide additional staff to Attorney General’s Dept. Who is the Minister in charge of Armed forces, its the President, so why is the President not ordering the Chief of Defense to provide the documents needed. This is a BIG DEAL that is going on. At the end both UNP and Yahpalana SLFP are all in this game protecting the rogues.

  • 3
    0

    utter nonsense
    they were sent to the ag’s dept I don’t know what happened after that
    why don’t you ask the ag to tell you why and tell the people you dumb ass
    are you scared of him
    thalatha is the last person to replace wijedasa another talk only person

  • 1
    2

    RW, VIRAJ, MALIK, & SAGALA are the foursome who have been in the same trade for sometime. Whenever RW comes to the forefront by hook or crook these C … suckers are there. There is yet another SAMAN.

  • 3
    1

    Sri lanka has become a joke. the previous govt was thieves. Those thieves struggling to come back because the Wikalpa method to steal is good. Ranil came to provide the Lichchavi King style which was ruling with Dasa Rajaj dharma. He established FCID. Now, Ranil is avoiding it. So, looters are ruling the country. So, we have to be skeptical about MY3 too now. It looks thieves arr stealing in the open and they do not care whether any one sees or not. What a Country. thieves are wearing two piece suits, transported in super luxury vehicles , live in mansions. Poor voters are confused. IS this collective karma. ruled by looters. one after the other.

  • 3
    0

    What harm in having a tatoo on your body depicting Buddha very close to your hear, may be in veneration. We see Bo trees every where on pavements gutters walls on top of toilet slabs etc. Are we to cut them all. Recently I saw a man urinating on to a Bo tree near Borella Kannattha Kithulwatte turn off around 6.30 pm. and I believe that’s a problem of location. If we follow dhamma as Buuddha preached ” Prathipatthi pooja not Amisa pooja these problems will not arise.

  • 3
    0

    A man who does not know the difference between a War-Hero and a War-Criminal is the President and Head of State in this country!

  • 0
    0

    In fact, President Maithripala Sirisena, who is also the Minister of Defence, went on record saying that no hero would be prosecuted for crimes during his tenure.

    No specific crimes against a specific persons mentioned here. Not even a general statement like earlier Mangala said that $18 billions robbed and sent to foreign banks.

    In the election time accusation, Old said to New that he has files on him and New said the same way too. Sagala is not telling anything like that against anybody. Sagala is very strongly protecting criminals by protecting specific matters.

    They keep playing these drama to confuse the IC and make them Modaya to believe that there is a lot of activities on investigation all over Lankawe in addition of doubling the locals’ Modaya Index. What sagala confirming here is “Guys you all safe, don’t get panic if we had to say something for the country or IC”. There are clear message to opposition that they against to each other on politics only, not aginst protecting each other on crimes.

    Reporters asked, Dayasiri Gamage about the Lord Naseby’s Nasty politics. He did not say anyone of this:

    1.Lord Nseby playing politics only for UK parliament. We are not in that.
    2.This report is not accurate because it is not supported by an Investigation. We will release an accurate report after investigation.
    3.Lord Nesby is supporting Chitanta Old Royals. We are Yahapalanaya. Yahapalanaya believes there were atrocities committed by Chitanta Old Royals and we had said that in our election promises. But he repllied that he thanks Lord Naseby for supporting the government( ie the Yahapalanaya’ Position of No Leader, no Commander, No Soldier will be investigated)Goverment will not be using his statement now, but when the time comes to that they will use.

  • 1
    0

    We want our money back. These politicians are thieves who took our money. It is not enough that they are prosecuted. We want our money back. In other countries as in ours, there are legal ways of freezing bank accounts, seizing property and embergoing of transactions of people who have stolen wealth. Why has this not been done in respect of our crooks from Chandrika, MR, Ranil/My3? Nigeria and the Philippines brought actions around the world seeking out wealth that their crooked Presidents spirited away. Why don’t we do the same? Get us back our money? We can then pay off the debts that these crooks created in the process of looting us.

  • 0
    0

    Should the minister report to the cabinet and NOT to the Working Committee (WC) of UNP. This WC has non-cabinet members – what about confidentiality issues?

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